(New York) Hundreds of professionals from the American film and television industry demonstrated in New York on Tuesday, in union unity at the foot of giants Amazon and HBO, to demand better working conditions and worker safety. employment, faced with the threat of artificial intelligence.

This demonstration – there are almost every day in Manhattan – was exceptional because organized for the “national day of union solidarity” at the call of all the professional organizations of the small and big screen.

A double strike movement has paralyzed Hollywood since May for screenwriters joined in July by actresses and actors.

“As you can see, it’s massive!” The movement has only grown … with union solidarity, determination and unity that has never been seen,” said Ezra Knight, president of the New York branch of the powerful union of workers. SAG-AFTRA actors and actresses.

The demonstration was animated by slogans, banners and horns of support from motorists.

“I’m scared, but I feel good here. We are fighting for something, being part of a big group and feeling that we are all in the same boat is something reassuring,” said Laura Houha, a 34-year-old actress from the same union.

The two strikes in Hollywood – the likes of which have not been seen since 1960 – halted all American film and television production except reality television and games. The Emmy Awards ceremony has been postponed from September 18 to January 15, 2024.

SAG-AFTRA, which represents 160,000 actors, stunt performers, dancers and other television and film professionals, prohibits all of its members from touring and promoting their productions, in person or on social media.

The union is calling for better pay, job protection and regulation of the use of artificial intelligence, a “threat” according to Mr. Knight.

And the dialogue between the WGA screenwriters union and the bosses of studios and streaming platforms – like Prime, HBO, Amazon and Warner Bros. Discovery – has been almost non-existent.

However, a glimmer of hope has emerged in recent days, since unions have sat down with the AMPTP, the organization of producers, including Disney and Netflix.

A “good sign” for Mr. Knight.

Today’s demonstration shows that the social movement has always been active in America, but remains threatened by the quest for profit by capitalists and corporations. But […] we are here, the struggle continues, ”assured the trade unionist.